October 28, 2016

October 24, 2016

Politics: How Write-In Voting Works

Still seeing a lot of people talking about writing in Bernie as their choice for president. That's not how write-in candidates work. 34 states require the candidate to be registered as a write-in, 9 do not allow write in candidates at all, and the remaining 7 states (Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Vermont, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Iowa, and Oregon) count the votes of anyone you write in.

However, Bernie is not a registered candidate in any of those 34 states. And even if he, by some miracle, managed to get enough votes to take all 7 of the open states, that would still not give him enough electoral votes to be president (see breakdown below).

Pennsylvania 20
New Jersey 14
Vermont 3
Rhode Island 4
New Hampshire 4
Iowa 6
Oregon 7
Total: 68 electoral votes

October 21, 2016

October 19, 2016

Politics: Throwing Your Vote Away

Personally, I tend to follow Eugene Debs' logic, "I'd rather vote for something I want and not get it, than vote for something I don't want and get it." But seriously, the thing that absolutely drives me crazy about all the people who are just so rabid about lesser of evils voting or a vote for anyone other than Hillary is a vote for Trump or a third party vote is just throwing your vote away apparently don't understand how our election process actually functions or the importance of where they live when it comes to their vote.

Listen up: I know you've been told this is a democracy and every vote counts, but that doesn't mean what you think it means. Thanks to the electoral college it's not about who gets the most votes. It's about who takes what states and gets the right amount of electors. Hell, thanks to the electoral college, it's even possible to lose the popular vote and still win the damn presidency.

So, let's take my home state as an example. I lean so far to the left that I almost tip over, right? Well, Indiana almost always goes red. It's not a blue state. It's not a battleground state. I mean, I think Indiana is like at a +7 Republican on the partisan voter index. In only one of the last 10 presidential elections, has Indiana gone for a Democrat. Furthermore, a Democrat has only taken Indiana 5 times since 1900. Each of those times, that Democrat won the popular vote by big numbers (one of those times, the Democratic even had a Hoosier for a VP).

Trump will almost certainly take Indiana since Hillary isn't anywhere near popular enough to be number six and Trump did far better in primary numbers than Romney did last presidential election when he took the state. It's the same with my neighbor to the South. Trump will almost certainly take Kentucky. The only time Kentucky voters have been willing to go blue is when the candidate is a white, male, Anglo-Saxon, Southern Governor. Do you follow what I'm getting at here?

As a liberal, you know what would be throwing my vote away? Voting for Hillary. Seriously. Wasted vote in Indiana. Trump will take the state and it's electors, rendering a Hillary vote absolutely meaningless. You know what makes my vote useful? Voting third party (since I'm a leftie that means Jill Stein). Even if the Green Party doesn't take Indiana, my vote for Jill Stein still accomplishes something. Things like ballot access and federal election funds? All that stuff that's important to building viable alternatives? That's all tied to how well a party does in the election. So, if you really want to stop Trump and don't want to "throw your vote away" and you're sick of having two terrible options for president? Then vote smart. Not blindly.

October 18, 2016

Politics: How Did We Get Rid of Kings...?

The mental hoops I see people jump through to defend Sanders new job as Democratic lapdog are absolutely mind blowing. It's one step away from, "He has to work for the corporate-run establishment and the warhawk candidate that stole the election. He's been infected with a time release poison and the DNC won't give him the antidote until after the election."

It's really helped hammer home one of things that I've noticed this election: people on all sides really just want "heroes" who will save them for some "evil" and whom they can follow blindly.

Honestly, sometimes, I'm really amazed we ever got rid of kings.

October 17, 2016

Your Special Advocate

The Miskatonic Dreams anthology is currently available from Alban Lake in both print and digital. I hope you’ll check it out, either now or when it becomes available through Amazon in about a week. 

"Your Special Advocate" introduces Ezra Gaskell who chairs the Dunwich Committee on Student Safety. There are a couple of things I tried to do with this story. Other writers portray the weirdness of Miskatonic University as either overt or covert. I prefer covert and so tried to filter that through my own experiences at the day job working with student safety where parents tend to panic over everything. I also wanted my story to be thoroughly modern and not read like a Lovecraft pastiche—my main character’s best resource is his smart phone and he’s never met an antiquarian. And lastly, my worldview runs counter to Lovecraft’s in pretty much every way. I wanted to make sure my story reflected that (hence the Dunwich connection)—
“Listen,” he said. “Right now, you feel the entire universe is against you.”

“That’s exactly how it feels,” she said. “It really, really does. Like the universe wants to squish me.”

“Maybe the universe is against you.” He shrugged. “I mean, I don’t think that’s how the universe works—that idea always seemed both egocentric and narcissistic to me—but who knows? What I do know is that I’m not against you. I’ve got your back.”

October 15, 2016

Saturday Update

Details soon on the anthology appearance of my horror story called "Your Special Advocate." In the meantime, I'm working on some more Cyberpunk stories...

October 14, 2016

Today's Pug Pic

Politics: The New McCarthyism

Senator Joseph McCarthy
I think it’s very telling that following the DNC leak the mainstream media has worked overtime to reframe anything connected to Assange and WikiLeaks in terms of how it “benefits Russia.” Instead of addressing any of the information revealed in any meaningful way, they’ve simply fallen in lockstep with the Dem’s New McCarthyism where any critic/opponent becomes an agent of Russia.

What makes the whole thing even more ironic to me (besides the fact that the DNC stole the primary for Hillary) is that Obama Administration has been the least transparent presidential administration in history and used the espionage act to prosecute whistleblowers and information leakers more than any other presidential administration ever.

But hey, you know, according to their marketing the Democrats are the liberal party, so ignore that the same way you ignore all the drone strikes and move along…

October 12, 2016

Alternative Clothing

Ever noticed how much "alternative clothing" amounts to just slapping a pentagram or a baphomet or the alchemical symbol for sulfur on something? Under capitalism even Satan gets commodified.

October 4, 2016

Six Bullets For John Carter

Years ago, "Six Bullets For John Carter" began as a very short story written for Beat To A Pulp. Now, the expanded, far more philosophical and far more violent, version is available for Amazon Kindle:
In the future, thieves don’t steal your identity, they steal you.

The man didn’t care who a client wanted or why, as long as they could pay. He buried his conscience under a mountain of wealth and there it stayed…until he agreed to grow the blonde from Alpha Centauri...

Burned by a powerful client, the man fled Mars for the free cities, the anarchist encampments along the Kuiper Belt, and the black market strongholds secreted in the Oort Cloud.

But now he’s tired of running. A slice-and-splice job has given him a new face and new body, but the rewrite will kill him in a matter of days. He’s got a powerful gun, but the weapon only came with six bullets. He’s sacrificing everything for revenge, but what will it get him?
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